Only a thin piece of tent mesh separated David Weale from a curious black bear. What would you have done in his situation?
For those who spend any sort of time in the outdoors, the fear of having a bear visit camp is constantly on the mind. So, imagine the surprise one morning when David Weale woke up from a deep sleep – and faced a real life nightmare.
Weale, a resident of Vancouver, was camping along the Capilano River in late July. When he awoke that morning he found a face staring back at him through the thin mesh of his tent – and it was black, covered in fur, with sizeable claws and teeth.
“I could feel that he wasn’t aggressive, he was more just curious, so that’s why I didn’t get too worked up,” Weale told CTV News. After a thirty minute standoff, and in hopes of distracting the bear, he placed smoothies outside the tent. The black bear proceeded to lick the smoothie out, then began to slowly walk off into the distance.
Weale has received many comments since posting this video to YouTube – both criticizing and applauding him. The latter say he kept his cool and that may have saved his life. Those that oppose his actions feel that he has now habituated this bear to food and humans, which never has a happy ending. They also believe if he had kept his food in airtight containers, there is a good chance the bear would never have shown up in the first place.
For what it is worth, Weale has admitted he made some mistakes, and hopes that this video can be used to teach people.
So the million dollar question is – what would you have done in this situation?